Michael Bay Will Direct Transformers 3

Paris holds its breath

Now, here's a clear winner of today's least surprising news story: Michael Bay will be back to direct Transformers 3, a third installment of giant robot carnage. Writing on Michaelbay.com, he also confirmed that the giant explosions will be happening in July 2011, not summer 2012 as originally thought.

Despite a critical panning, Transformers 2 took $832m worldwide, and sits second only to Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince ($927m) in global box office this year. Bay met this week with ILM, where presumably all leave is cancelled, and has been in talks with Hasbro about new characters. "Well, it's official: We have a great Transformers 3 story," Bay said. "Today is day one."

While Shia LaBeouf and Megan Fox are yet to confirm, co-writer Ehren Kruger is on board, and the two leads are expected to follow shortly. Judging by the intriguing postscript at the home of online Bayhem, rumours of a feud between Bay and Fox have been somewhat overstated.

Transformers 3's July 2011 release date puts it head-to-head with Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part II in a bajillionaire's club of summer blockbusters. Place your bets on the winner below.